William M. Briggs

Statistician to the Stars!

Orlando Shooting — Open Thread

Today is the first day of class; I originally had another post scheduled, but since I thought readers would like to discuss recent events, and I haven’t had time to prepare anything intelligent, an open thread.

The headline that summarized it best was from the Washington Post: “The new norm: When tragedy hits, Americans stand divided“, which began with the words:

Three of the most contentious questions in American culture and politics — gay rights, gun control and terrorism — collided in a horrific way in an Orlando nightclub early Sunday.

It is not entirely clear what inspired Omar Mateen to commit the worst mass shooting in U.S. history…

Discuss.

74 Comments

  1. The mass media and law enforcement are always confused when people do as they say they are going to. Why does Reality keep sticking its ugly face into their Narrative?

  2. So sad that people are seeing this through their political ideologies instead of as an attack against the West. Liberalism divides people into groups and this is no exception. When we should unite we can’t.

  3. Well said, Nate.

    We can’t unite on this because the Left does not unite. It divides. This is a perfect example of how the Left uses people. In the past, women and gays mattered and were coddled and made heroes. Then along came the muslims, the religion of peace, and goodbye usefulness of gays and women. Toss them under the bus, they have no value now.

    As I have noted elsewhere, it’s very easy to beat up the Right and to beat up Christians. They don’t shoot you in you nightclub. Sure, they may call you sinners, some may even spit on you (though that could be considered rather un-Christian), but they do not massacre you. Islam, the religion of peace, specifically states you are to be killed. This incident may be a perfect example of followers the Left engaging in doublethink in an effort to avoid the unfortunate reality that singing Kumbya will not unite terrorists with their prey and make everyone suddenly happy. The leadership has no desire to unite whatsoever. They are busy forcing you to believe the lie—like Islam is the religion of peace.

  4. I’ve been responding to people who believe this event is best responded to with more gun laws with the following:

    “I see, so you’re saying that if a small number of people abuse a basic constitutional right we should eliminate that right for everyone? Ok, then lets outlaw Islam and deport all foreign Muslims? No, that would be ridiculous wouldn’t it. How about this? How about we outlaw homosexuality then there will be no gays for Muslims to hate? That’s ridiculous too? Well that’s exactly what you’re proposing when you propose gun control as a response to this type of event.”

  5. Gun control seems to be like treating a symptom rather than the disease. It can be efficacious to a degree, even reasonable and right, but doesn’t solve the problem. The problem is lack of a decent respect for human rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

  6. The hatred and hateful words against people different from us…

    The blaming game… undoubtedly, it’s Obama’s fault. Undoubtedly. That simple.

    The sorrow of losing a beloved child… :’-(

  7. A healthy gut needs beneficent bacteria. If you attack the beneficent bacteria (say, by heavy doses of antibiotics), you are not safer on that account; the result of your efforts is to leave you more vulnerable to the infections that really kill you.

    I’m a Christian, and I think the greatest responsibility of us Christians is to teach this old truth to the LGBT (in Brazil those are the letters) community: they need us. While they keep on despising us and attacking our faith, they are simply weakening the immune system of western societies. If you are a rabid anti-religionist, you must understand (reality and all that jazz) that there are worse infections out there than the Christian one. You must cherish the Christian infection. Laugh at it among your enlightened friends, but align with it in the public sphere, otherwise the first ones in the line of fire will be you.

    I know it will be painful, but LGBT must eventually accept that there is no healthy gut without bacteria. (Wiser social theorists have known that for more than 200 years, but wisdom is a bad word nowadays).

  8. JH – It is clearly the fault of George Bush. I’m surprised the President didn’t actually say so. He must have implied as much though.

    Mariner – You make good sense.

  9. Yawrate, yes, Obama didn’t say so, but must have implied as much. You know, for me, detaching from any projections is a way to stay out of anger.

  10. Religious zealots setting up laws based on their faith, killing those who don’t believe precisely the same way…what’s new about that?

    The U.S. was founded on such atrocities, or arguably more precisely, the attempts of those to escape such and start afresh in the then “New World” where, in the new colonies, laws were based on the then-interpretation of scripture & what grisly punishments to impose on violators based on those scriptures.

    For a nice little synopsis of the bloody & sordid history of Christian-on-Christian persecutions by believers/practitioners that knew the “right” way and worked to purge those heretical influences, see: http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/religion/rel01.html

    There, one will note that those believers that “got it right” are, in hindsight, hard to pick out as pretty much everybody was persecuting everybody else… Back then, diversity of Christian faith was the basis of/justification for killing other Christians with the wrong views regarding what constituted right faith.

    Today, the same trend continues — those that have figured out the “right” way are purging, still, the heretics.

    Monotheism is the issue.

    One god, three main religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam), and the more primitive are employing the age-old methods.

    Same ole same ole…

    Curiously, within Judaism there’s multiple sects but considerable homogeneity. Ditto for Islam, with the most noteworthy schism being the heritage about who’s in charge next…much more so than the doctrine of belief.

    Then we come to Christianity — so many diverse and incompatible/mutually exclusive doctrines that anyone looking at what people self-classify themselves in the “Christian” category cannot escape an obvious fact: They all cannot possibly be right/some must be wrong.

    Its hardly surprising that practitioners of Islam, those honing to a primitive value system & outlook, will resort to the tried & true approach of cleansing the heretic by bloodshed — especially when their reference documents allow them to attack those that attack them …

    … and, don’t a society’s values that rationalize & endorse sinful (per their reference documents) values (e.g. gay marriage) qualify as an “attack” on the very foundations of their faith?

    We’re seeing a very emotional response and there’s no reason to expect that to change anytime soon…

  11. Some ACLU lawyers are blaming Christians and republicans for the murders. When you become PC you have to deny reality and live in fantasy land.

  12. 1. Went to bed around 9:30pm Saturday evening.
    2. Didn’t get drugged up or intoxicated.
    3. Didn’t stay out late hanging around a raging noisy crowd fully focused on total dissipation until 2:00am.
    4. Went to church Sunday morning.
    5. Didn’t get an STD, hangover, shot or mugged.

  13. I agree with JH’s sentiment.
    Mariner,
    I don’t think the homosexuals are waiting on Catholics for protection.
    Certainly none from this blog I refer back to my remark about the church of Scotland’s ‘outrageous’ vote. It may be outrageous but outrageous times require outrageous measures and if government doesn’t step in to control the unstable element within Islam by whatever means is necessary then all the rest, all the rest of the citizenry will need each other and they will need to hold their noses and learn to get along to withstand the onslaught from islam.

    There is reality and there is theology.
    In these current times I am afraid that reality for people of what they know and what they understand of human behaviour will win over and above any theological ideal. This is lost on the pontificators. They fiddle while Rome burns.
    The ideal that Americans should be able to protect themselves with guns was of no use in this case. Perhaps they could hand out assault riffles to all sixteen year olds to keep the nation safe. It’s time the guns happy woke up and smelt the coffee.

  14. Larry,

    Watch you don’t trip over your halo.

  15. Zundfolge, Mariner, Ray: Well said.

    JH: It IS Obama’s fault, in large part. Plus the progressives worldwide who live in the fantasy belief that singing Kumbaya will unite the world. Blame laid where blame belongs.

    Ken: So it happened in the past, it happens elsewhere, so it must be a-okay. Next you’ll be crying for beheadings on the beach. Morality is based on who’s the one at top now and there’s no need to even pretend there’s a right way. You probably support dictators because they have always existed, too. Wars, pestilence, all the things that some foolishly call “wrong”.

  16. Joy: It was a GUN FREE ZONE. What part of gun free zone do you not understand?????

  17. Sheri,
    I didn’t know it was a gun free zone. Do you understand that?

  18. Where did he buy his gun?
    There’s your problem.

  19. Joy: Maybe you should read more widely before you declare this was a case where a gun would do no good.

    He was a SECURITY GUARD— a licensed one who was allowed to carry a gun. He bought it legally and passed all background checks.

    In part, people are reporting that he could not be denied a gun because he was Muslim and that would look like prejudice. So, yes, THAT is the problem.

  20. I am enraged, and to some degree unsurprised, by the attack against US citizens by agents of foreign powers and ideologies intent on the destruction and conquest of our nation (read: not government).

    Stefan Molyneux has made his obligatory video.
    In it, he mentions the failure of Western society to appropriately identify and condemnify immoral and dangerous behavior for reasons, inferred, that they resonate with a certain group’s desires. In this case the clear and present danger of Islamic aggression and the left’s outright double standard in applying a, “separate justice,” to muslims.

    However, he makes several assertions mimicking the unsubstantiated idea that homosexuality is a good or moral thing. While no doubt it is not the entirety of his outrage, he does make a point that accepting immoral, deadly, degenerate, and selfish behavior in the form of same sex fornication should be a major point of Western society.

    I can’t help but think, halfway down the path to truth he put on a blindfold.
    Yes western civilization has a problem with failing to identify and condemn dangerous ideas and practices with which certain groups have express desire to promote. But this failure goes much deeper than simply the enemy inside the gates.

    How easy it is to ignore one evil, when you have had so much practice ignoring others.

  21. The apostle James said “But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.” To many moderns, the phrase “law of liberty” is an oxymoron. How dare someone tell me how to live my life? I am the captain of my ship, I can do as I please! Such thinking replaces liberty with license. License is fallen mans vain attempt to increase his liberty beyond the boundaries which the Creator set, boundaries which allow a people to interact freely without fear or rancor. Has the sexual revolution, with its increase in porn and pedophilia, increased the liberty of children to play outside without parental supervision? Hardly. In every stretching of license, a corresponding decrease in someone else’s liberty results. Is the Christian bakery owner at liberty to exercise her religious convictions against supporting what she sees as sinful? Not any more. I knew there would be an attempt to assign the blame for this atrocity to Christians, and I haven’t been disappointed. The abject hatred of Christianity by a large segment of society has blinded them to the real source of the evil that is happening before their eyes. It’s not that they can’t see, it’s that they refuse to see.

  22. allowed to carry a gun. (assault riffle)
    He bought it legally (assault riffle)
    and passed all background checks.
    Three problems plus the one you mention.
    Four problems!
    As to reading Sheri, I haven’t even watched a full news clip, I’ve read headlines on line as I’ve been out most of the time. However, the points remain unchanged. I can’t see any good comes from owning purchasing or having easy access to, assault riffles or machine guns.

    Regarding G4S don’t even go there. They have a history. Obviously not good at vetting their staff either. Normally I’d say the employer should have the benefit of the doubt. I didn’t know they were even still in business.
    London 2012 had to bring the army in when they relied on G4. I think it’s the same company or reborn from it.

  23. None are more interested in division (and money) than the Nazi Rifle Association and its defenders.
    It’s amazing how many of you claim to follow the teachings of an ancient, bedraggled, liberal, justice-oriented, essentially-Marxist hippie… except of course, you don’t really come close.

  24. In my Facebook timeline, reactions to the shooting can be divided into roughly 4 camps:

    1) The cause is the availability of firearms (minor claim- any gun owner is a potential terrorist)
    2) The cause is homophobia (minor claim- anyone who disagrees with gay marriage is a potential terrorist)
    3) The cause is Islamic extremism (minor claim- any Muslim is a potential terrorist.)
    4) The cause was insanity (minor claim- anyone suffering from severe mental illness is a potential terrorist.)

    Based on initial reports that the alleged shooter exhibited bizarre behavior well before his attack, I would guess he was a madman who stumbled on a cause. If he were from a different background, I suspect his actions would be the same, though his targets may have been different. But that’s my interpretation.

    Though there is a lot of disagreement about the root cause of the shooting, I don’t think any one of those causes could be banned successfully. I guess banning guns would be the most feasible, and would decrease the ‘damage multiplier’ (to borrow a gaming term) of the other causes, but that’s a prickly resolution, too. Despite everything, I have a hard time getting behind a gun ban, for whatever reason. Maybe it’s a deep seated bias or a general skepticism of people who want to limit my access to dangerous things.

    In the meantime, people on my Facebook feed continue to fruitlessly argue at cross purposes, and they make me want to drink well before quitting time.

  25. Ken: There’s only one doctrine that defines whether one is Christian or not — personal commitment to the belief that Yeshua (Jesus) is God incarnate. Everything else is a distinctive of practice. Many sects have claimed affiliation to core Christianity, but upon examination are found lacking in the essential criterion. They make the claim for the cover it gives; everybody agrees the Christ was a good guy.
    As for abhorrent behavior, religion has been as much an excuse as a reason. But you’re right that violence is empowered by emotion. The curse infected at the beginning: “But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid…” Not for nothing are there so many exhortations to not be afraid. It’s the driver of much violence and foolish behavior.

  26. Thank you Joy. Just saying. Wasn’t particularly trying to draw attention to my own worthiness. Just lessons that my parents and grandparents taught me at a very young age. Driving around late on Friday and Saturday nights can get you into trouble. Hanging with a large crowd of intoxicated and drugged individuals can get you into trouble. Just saying.

    No matter what religion you follow or what you believe or what you think others should believe, I think that we all can agree that it’s safer to go to bed early on Saturday evening, get some good sleep and get up and go to church Sunday morning than spend Saturday evening until 2:00am charging around Orlando’s seamier side. You don’t like safe, calm, happy, peaceful? Well ok, go for it. Again, just saying.

    Thank you Brian H. Well stated.

  27. Joy,

    He had an AR-15, which is a rifle. Many think it is a scary looking rifle, so they dub it an “assault rifle.” In fact, it is not an automatic weapon, or as you put it, a “machine gun.” You have to squeeze the trigger of an AR-15 every time you want it to fire, just like you do with all hand guns. In fact, automatic weapons, true “assault rifles” have been outlawed for civilians in the US since 1932. You can get one, but it takes an Act of Congress and lots of money. This shooter did not have an automatic weapon. As for banning AR-15’s, France and Belgium do so. The recent terrorist attacks in those countries were carried out with a variety of firearms, all of which were illegal to possess in those countries. During the “Troubles,” the IRA often outgunned the police and military in a country where private ownership of guns has never been legal. So banning the purchase of guns doesn’t really solve the problem of people willing to kill those they hate, for whatever reason.

    Then there’s that pesky Second Amendment to the Constitution. If you want to ban guns in the US, start the process to repeal the Second Amendment. It can be done. The Constitution lays out for you exactly what you must do. Then, have Congress and the states pass now legal legislation prohibiting the private ownership of firearms. No big deal there. Finally, empower the police, or some new paramilitary force, to go out and confiscate the 300 million or so guns in the US. When you are done, an Islamic terrorist like the Orlando shooter will still be able to get the “assault rifle” he needs to shoot up a gay bar. But I’m sure you’ll “feel” better have done something. In fact, you’ll have helped Mrs. Clinton on her promise to “doubledown” on gun violence. Go for it! I wish solving all our problems was as easy as banning “assault rifles.” Best of look to you in your endeavor.

    Greg

  28. Larry,
    You don’t get away with that sort of cheap shot.
    What I like and what I do are none of your business.
    Since you make the insinuation because you can’t help yourself it might surprise you to know that I am a confirmed christian who is Church of England.
    I have never been drunk in my life, only merry and rarely even that.
    I have never done anything on your list.
    I have danced until four in the morning on ski holidays sober and then ski’d all day the following day on the first lift at nine for a week though in my twenties.
    I think I’ve probably been in a few rowdy groups in my time as well I don’t know if it was Saturday or not!
    So, I’m sure you’ve tried a lot more things than I. I don’t care for dull rock bands, never have, am not interested in ‘festivals’. I have a gold medal for Latin American and Ballroom dancing. That’s my kind of dance.
    As for being peaceful, you only need to have read my comments in the past on music to know what the truth is.

    So actually, I am in the clear. (and I have done some really stupid things in my time, lived to tell the tale and never tried to blame anybody else for it.) again, I don’t know if it was Saturday or not.

  29. Joy said, I can’t see any good comes from owning purchasing or having easy access to, assault riffles or machine guns.
    In the late great USSR gun ownership was prohibited and strictly enforced. Only licensed professional hunters were allowed to have guns. With the collapse of the USSR we obtained the statistics and the murder rate in the USSR was twice the USA murder rate. Lot of good banning guns did.

  30. Hi Joy. Wasn’t a cheap shot. Not sure how it could be interpreted that way. And I didn’t need all the background. It’s ok with me where you go. My point: I’m not going there. That’s all. And that doesn’t make me righteous.

    I guess my main thought is how so many people are going to get on TV and say how sad it is that a whole bunch of people that are trying to destroy themselves through dissipation, reckless behavior, and thoughtlessness are somehow brave, courageous and to be emulated. So if that’s a cheap shot then I suppose this is another one. Just saying I’m not going there. Not going to the seamy side of Orlando. Not going to say that I stand with those folks. Also not saying that they should have been shot at. Just saying.

  31. Ron in Austin

    June 13, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    Joy,

    There is no easy access to machine guns. It is possible to own them, but because they are rare (thanks to the gubmint banning manufacture for individuals in `86) and they are expensive. To buy one you have to undergo a thorough background check that can take months. If you are buying as an individual you will be fingerprinted as well. (Rules being implemented in July require that if a trust is the buyer, all members of the trust must be fingerprinted.)

    As to easy access to “assault rifles,” they are usually defined as machine guns so are covered in the above paragraph. The AR15 is NOT an assault rifle. It is a semi-auto sport rifle.

    There are 100 million gun owners in the US and probably 400 to 500 millions guns. Good luck trying to grab all of them.

    Finally, more people are killed by knives and hammers than by “assault” rifles. Maybe we should ban them instead.

  32. Joy: People pass background checks because they haven’t committed any crimes. He hadn’t committed any crimes. There is no test available for who will and will not commit crimes. This includes peace officers who go off the deep end and military people who do the same. No matter how one tries, one cannot predict the next mass murderer, nor the tools he uses to accomplish said act.
    Greg Locke covered the remainder of your comment.

    Nice, Shecky. Would you be a member of the Totalitarian Left?

  33. Sheri, It has been reported that Mateen had a history of violence against his wife. “Wife beaters” are prohibited from owning firearms of any type in Florida. He should not have passed the background check. Either the violence towards his wife was not properly documented or the authorities performed a slip shod check. The states and the FBI do not have the resources to complete thorough checks. This would be a good place to start keeping weapons out of the hands of people like Mateen. Still, your point stands that if you haven’t committed a crime you’ll get a weapon. Moreover, someone who wants a weapon will find it easily enough, legally or not.

  34. Steve E: In order for a wife beater to not pass a background check, he has to have been officially convicted. There seems to be only his first wife now saying he beat her. If she didn’t press charges, nothing shows up on the background check. No matter how thorough the background check, it can’t find things that are not reported. I agree that he could have gotten a gun no matter what, legal or not.

  35. As a European I have a fundamentally different starting point when it comes to gun ownership and I find it hard to reconcile this type of weapon with civilian ownership. That being said, this is not a gun issue and I resent this atrocity being equated with Sandy Hook and other mass shootings where an obviously disturbed individual was able to cause a lot more damage than they could have done if less lethal weapons were all that they could obtain.

    Similarly, as a married heterosexual I don’t understand the (often) highly promiscuous nature of the LGBT lifestyle such that there is a need for separate, highly identifiable, gay night clubs. But I don’t consider this to be predominantly an anti-gay attack either.

    Yes, the choice of venue was deliberate and the use of a semi-automatic rifle enabled a large number of victims to be killed and injured, but the intent was terrorism. Random, indiscriminate, shooting with the intent to strike terror into a whole population by making said population feel unsafe going about their daily lives. This was a planned attack with the intent to take lives with whatever weapons were available. This is the critical issue and we really should not be muddying the waters with other arguments.

  36. I read something that made me think about names of guns. Some names may be confusing. The AR in AR 15 does not stand for “Assault Rifle” or “Automatic Rifle”, it stands for Armalite Rifle, the company that made the rifle.

    I don’t know how many people think the AR stands for something other than Armalite, but I can see how the AR could lead to confusion.

  37. UpstateIslanders

    June 13, 2016 at 5:07 pm

    Sunday morning marked a turning point, I believe. The killing of so many people and the reason behind it is so repulsive and extreme that any attempts to analyze it or put it in its relevant categories with any sense of nuance or judiciousness will be looked upon with scorn. Already there are the false equivalences between the opposition to so-called gay marriage to what Mr. Marteen did. Already one particularly irresponsible and detestable media personality has proclaimed as much. Granted, it’s not helpful to deny that hatred played a role in this attack. Nevertheless, what is called hatred sometimes is nothing but. I don’t know how many of us are afraid to point out the problems that homosexual behavior has wrought on people, particularly men. To simply affirm that sexual behaviors between unmarried people -including those within the same sex – is somehow on par with the married act between husband and wife is disastrous. To tell young men and women that they should feel free to explore the sexual landscape so long as they are “ethical” is cruel and unmerciful. My generation was sent off to the slaughter of the sexual landscape. Let’s be honest here, HIV/AIDS may not be as pressing as it was in decades past, but it is only a short while before the next opportunistic infection tramples on and disfigures another generation of our brothers. But Sunday morning’s event is the last straw to the progressive gatekeepers. Any attempt to explain, encourage or uphold chaste behavior – no matter how charitable and kind in practice – will be scorned as equivalent to the cruel, cowardly and perverted act that was carried out in that club. Any dissent from the prevailing orthodoxy of so-called tolerance and compassion will be punished and in some instances with the boot of government. It’s sad that these men and women were killed. I doubt any had an inkling that Saturday night would be their last. It’s a terror that is beyond the comprehension of us who are alive. We can only pray for mercy and support for the families and loved ones.

  38. Liberals murdered those poor kids. Not guns, not Muslims — Liberals. It was Liberals who opened the gates to Muslims in the 1965 Hart-Cellar immigration deform act, prior to which Muslims were practically nonexistent in America. Liberals coddled and encouraged Muslims to come here knowing full well the threat they posed and their bloody history of aggression against all infidels which was founded in the teachings and practices of Mohammad. They knew it, yet they brought them in by the millions and even after the jihad was fully expressed in murder after murder, outrage after outrage, they defended the Muslims, called it a religion of peace! and doubled down on their evil plan, hellbent on increasing the Islamic invasion. You don’t blame a gun you blame the man who uses it. If a man unleashed a man-eating tiger into that club would you blame the tiger or the man who unleashed it? Islam is the tiger Liberals unleashed on America. Their devilish hands are drenched in blood.

  39. Didn’t know they had CofE-style halos. Joy, don’t trip over yours.

  40. Once again, I have to say, Shecky G I mean R … ALWAYS makes me laugh.

  41. It surprised me that it took 3 hours to end this.

  42. Joy,

    I asked rhetorically in front of my two children why anyone would need an assault weapon. One told me that Pepper, our dog, would probably want it to efficiently kill the pesky, fast-running squirrels in our yard. (Pepper doesn’t like those squirrels at all.) Another assured me that I have the right to buy one or more phasers, human vaporizing or not, at the upcoming Star Trek Convention.

    Having grown up in a country where there are strict gun laws, I understand your perspective.

    Ray,

    Where do you find gun violence statistics for Russia? Some of my students did a simple project on gun violence comparisons, and they claimed that they couldn’t find such statistics for Russia.

  43. Sheri,

    Considering the facts that Obama was not a SWAT team member at the shooting scene, did not deny Mateen his right to purchase an AR-15-like assault weapon, and did not preach political-incorrectly like an ISIS leader to make Mateen a more peaceful person, so yes, it’s Obama’s fault. If Obama had abandoned his political incorrectness, ISIS and all the shooters, be it Muslin Mateen or Christian Roof, definitely would have been too scared to commit horrible crimes.

    However, I think that Mateen, though dead, should take more than 0% responsibility. So Maybe 33% Obama, 33% the Progressive, 33% atheists, 1% Mateen. Just to be fair.

  44. Christians who believe their religion is better than others’: “The Orlando shooting proves me right. “

    Atheists who want to condemn religions: “The Orlando shooting proves me right. “

    People who want to ban Muslim immigrants: “The Orlando shooting proves me right.”

    People who want to ban assault weapons with high capacity magazines: “The Orlando shooting proves me right.”

    An anecdote that proves everyone right. How unfortunate.

  45. Necessary Correction –
    If Obama had abandoned his political correctness, ISIS and all the shooters, be it Muslin Mateen or Christian Roof, definitely would have been too scared to commit horrible crimes.

  46. “An anecdote that proves everyone right. How unfortunate.”

    False argument. As if the presence of conflicting claims means none of them are right (and to a Liberal, there is no truth anyway). No Muslims, no jihad. YOU brought them here. You and your satanic brethren. There never was jihad in America until you created it in the name of your evil utopia. We’ve had guns for hundreds of years and never had the sort of sick violence of the last 40 years — the years of Triumphant Liberalism. If Muslims didn’t have guns there’s plenty of other means to wage jihad like bombs and crashing planes into buildings, dirty bombs, gas attacks, germ warfare — is your gun ban going to stop any of that? The simple truth is that Islamic Jihad in America is entirely a creation of Liberals like yourself. Liberalism is worse than Islam.

  47. Throughout history, societies (formed into states or alliances or whatever) have relied on the citizens to fulfill, if needed, the obligation to defend the nation by bearing arms. In ancient times it sometimes was an honor code demanded of citizens and sometimes it descended into conscription of one sort or another. In modern times there have been several wars in which this obligation was invoked by most nations, including the United States. In its best form, it is the fulfillment of the ultimate obligation one owes to the nation to which one accepts allegiance (and by extension the totality of one’s fellow citizens). This obligation typically falls on a relatively young age group, from about 17 to 35, but it is usually invoked by an older generation of leadership. The personal morality of this state of affairs is an issue of individual conscience, but sufficient numbers answering the call in a time of need is sometimes required to preserve the nation to which one owes allegiance. WWII in particular was a time to invoke this obligation and in general Americans answered the call. In Korea and Vietnam the call was clouded, the connection to national survival less clear and accepted, but in general the call was also answered.

    Since then, the U.S. has been relatively removed from direct armed threats to national survival. Part of this may or may not be due to our dominance in nuclear weapons, part may be the evolution of proxy warfare conducted by major powers in various theaters around the world. Personally, I do not believe it is because the world has become a safer place, where nations no longer will want to assert dominance under arms or perpetrate unacceptable mass atrocities. For better or worse, we have come to rely on a professional military to bear arms for us and the general citizenry has had the luxury of living removed from familiarity with using guns (and other weapons), if they so choose, and many choose to do so. That is their right in a free society.

    I find myself now in that older generation which will not be able to answer the call in body, but which may have to make the call on others in the event of major worldwide war. When or whether to make the call is a difficult choice except in the case of attack on the homeland or invasion by a foreign power. Even in WWII we did not make the call while Europe and much of Asia fell and Britain was under siege, we waited until we were attacked. How a future worldwide war might happen is not clear, but if it does happen, we should be prepared to answer the call or we will be conquered and enslaved or worse. This is a personal fear of mine since I have a 17-year-old son. If such a war breaks out in the next decade or two, I know he will answer the call. Neither I nor my wife will be able to stop him. The most we can hope for is that he does his job well and by either luck or grace survives to come home to a victorious country.

    Doing the job of a soldier ultimately requires the ability to carry a gun within range of the enemy and survive long enough to point the gun repeatedly and reliably at enough of the enemy that more of them die for their country than do we. It is not an easy thing to point the gun repeatedly and reliably when one is tired, scared, hurt, hungry or sick, but it is impossible if one has not had enough experience with the gun to use it mechanically well, with discipline and efficiency. Boot camp (or basic training) typically allows just two or three weeks of live fire training, the rest devoted to things such as fitness, first aid, tactics, etc. required for the other part of the job – survival. The end result is that a recruit with no experience with guns may go into battle without sufficient experience to point the gun repeatedly and reliably. If luck is with them, he or she may survive long enough to get that skill, but the odds are not good if they have no prior weapon experience.

    One thing that gets lost in the gun control debate is the other reason for having and using a gun, either on the range or hunting, namely for the citizenry to be ready if the nation needs to make that ultimate call. If that call comes, there will not be enough police or National Guard, or existing military to answer. We will need to send our sons and daughters to war. They will be far better served if they have grown up using guns and have learned to use them safely, reliably, and with discipline under a variety of conditions and come to appreciate them for the dangerous but effective tool they are and not the toy some seem to think. It is not an accident that so many effective soldiers have come from young men who grew up hunting. If worst comes to worst, you and I may need to defend the homeland itself.

    This may seem anachronistic, old-fashioned, or paranoid to some, but in the inimitable words of Yogi Berra, “If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be.”

  48. Rob: I agree with your assessment. This was a terrorist attack, pure and simple, meant to terrorize everyone.

  49. JH: Obama encourages Muslim immigration and lies about it being a peaceful religion. So yes, he share blame. However, being a bit more realistic, I’d give 90% of the blame to Mateen and 10% to those who mislabel the immigrants and invaders and the religion, whatever party they may belong to. Someone let them into this country and they should never have done so.

    If Obama had abandoned his fantasy world of getting along with everyone, these individuals might not be in this country. Unless, of course, he really has no desire to do anything other than destroy a country he has said he does not like and is ashamed of.

  50. How come the armed doorman (I.e. The good guy with a gun) wasn’t able to prevent the massacre.

    Yet an unarmed woman was able to prevent a mass shouting in school.

  51. Briggs, read through these comments. Do you see how dumb the conservatives are?

    JMJ

  52. Sheri,

    Again you are lucky that being ridiculous doesn’t kill.

    This guy is a US born citizen not an immigrant. His father came in the country when Reagan was the President who armed and finance Bin Laden.

    Blame Reagan and conservative for their own action.

  53. Who’s to blame?
    How to prevent this from ever happening again?

    The answers are both simple and not the slightest in doubt – the person to blame is the one who pulled the trigger and it is not possible to prevent this happening again.

    It is a worthy goal to aim for, this prevention of atrocities – and yet a vain and never-ending task that can never succeed.
    People are imperfect – all of us.
    People are unpredictable – all of us.
    People can create weapons from the most mundane items – paint stripper and hair dye, for example, can make a potentially very nasty explosive.

    Yes, it is sad that such events happen.
    No, I do not wish for more of them, although I fear we will get them anyway.
    The only solution that I see is the same one your greatest leaders once uttered – eternal vigilance for those who would destroy what they fear.

    Make no mistake – this act was the act of a coward, an act carried out under the duress of his fear of freedom, his fear of individuality, and the fear his religion instilled in him of that religions definition of evil sinners.
    It was a betrayal of trust.
    It was an attempt to make you feel fear too, so he would not be alone in his fear.

    I can’t help thinking that the answer to such acts is not reprisal, not changes in a vain attempt to prevent such despicable acts recurring, but instead the courage to stand steady and tall, and say loudly “This person was evil. We can never prevent all evil, only our own, as individuals. We will never give up our hard-won freedoms to those who think threats and atrocities will over-power us. We are not afraid to speak our minds, even should you be offended by us. Neither should you be afraid to speak yours, for we will never offer violence as a solution unless others think they can take what is rightfully ours by force – then they will feel the full wrath of our displeasure. If you are so cowardly in your demeanor that you would encourage the slaughter of unarmed, undefended and unprepared souls, then your cause shall inevitably wither away, while we who defend against you only grow stronger. If you have done this to make us change then despair, for we will never change because of you and your actions, only because we believe we are right to change, and the change is what we perceive as of our benefit and ours alone. That is our right and our duty, both to God and our country.”

  54. JMJ: No one except a Liberal thinks conservatives are dumb. Repeating that ad nauseum will not “prove” you are right or convince any one of anything other than you are incapable of actual thought.
    (Applies to others, too.)

    Kneel: This is NOT based on fear. It’s anger, it’s hatred. This man did not fear homosexuals—he hated them. It’s not the same thing and trying to tell people it’s fear motivated is wrong. You just as well claim he did it out of love, so they wouldn’t be living the miserable existence of a homosexual.
    You are correct, probably, that he was trying to instill fear in others. However, he may have just been dealing with something the way he thought was appropriate.
    So your “solution” is to call depravity normal? Isn’t that how we got into this mess in the first place? By calling things what they aren’t?
    Actually, we won’t change. Liberals double down on being stupid and immoral when something like this happens. It’s like the child told not to run in the halls who then sprints everywhere and gets his buddies to do the same. We love to break every rule out there, but freak out when someone breaks our rules. We are not logical or moral or right—just loud-mouthed, ill-mannered adolescents flipping people off (actually, old rich guys do that now too). We care not about freedom, only anarchy and the “right” to behave as badly as we feel without consequence. Reality tells us where this leads, and we’re well down that path. In that sense, you are correct. This will not end, simply because we do not want it to end—we value bad behaviour and loud, obnoxious, in-your-face actions more than peace or life itself.

  55. What we witnessed in Orlando was the left self imploding. Leftism is self destructive. The only good thing about evil is if destroys itself.

  56. Perfect assessment, JMJ! Call those with opposing views “dumb,” and you win the argument without breaking a sweat! No need to marshal potentially messy counter arguments, or address the issues raised. These guys are dumb as planks! Look at how superior I am! I type one line and I win! And, I get to throw a little mud on our host, as well. Now, back to my mama’s basement to plot my next great rhetorical victory. Maybe next time I’ll call them stupid! That will convince them of the error of their ways!

  57. One thing that the progressive left certainly doesn’t have a monopoly on is ignorance. The Dunning-Kruger effect is in full force on both sides throughout this thread.

  58. Can you give examples, Nate?

  59. You do gotta admit,

    It’s amazing how many of you claim to follow the teachings of an ancient, bedraggled, liberal, justice-oriented, essentially-Marxist hippie… except of course, you don’t really come close.

    is laugh-out-loud funny.

  60. Greg L,
    What a patient response. The guns row is an intractable problem. I argue for the ban of machine guns but am quite aware that it really won’t happen. There are 3.5 million identical guns in US circulation. The media on satellite channels have been referring to the weapon as an assault rifle. What angers me is the descent into discussion about gayness. The real danger lies elsewhere while people argue about acts of gayness and indulge imaginations.

    I’m certainly not supporting Hillary. She is insincere, has previous and is not a Conservative.

    Hearing the news today all sorts are trying to make this homophobia where it is clearly terrorism. There’s talk of the man being gay himself and just being a nutcase, as if that makes it okay. However he did shout Allah al akbah, (however it’s spelled) and he knew that by shooting in a gay bar he would be reaching non muslims whatever his own internal ‘conflict’ was all about.
    There’s all sorts of phsychobbbble and mind reading going on. The FBI had his number earmarked as well.
    Seems there are a lot of people that the media give air time to who don’t want this to be a terrorist attack. Rather, I think they want it to be homophobia for the upcoming election benefit it can obviously achieve if spun carefully.

    Apart from Machine guns and assault rifles aside, I agree with Fah.
    That the man only killed fifty explains that it was not an automatic rifle. There were straight men and women killed too.

  61. Larry,
    From line four onwards you certainly use the method of implication with regular use of the word ‘you’.
    The response was in kind to your remark.
    The ad hominem at the same time as the straw man.
    “So if you want to do XYZ…”
    “So if you’re an xyz”
    etc.
    It’s used a lot on here. It’s technically illegal.

    It doesn’t mean that your grandparents didn’t give good advice.

  62. Sheri,
    See the comment to Greg about the guns. The satellite channels have been referring to them incorrectly. It’s a semi automatic, apparently.

    Ray, ( assuming you’re from the US.)
    Russia is described as an army with a country. by nature and virtue of it’s neighbours and history. The US is a different animal.
    Realise that I know how cheeky it is to argue about guns with Americans and it isn’t just for devilment.

    People over here mostly seem baffled by it. I imagine people want at least as big or bigger a weapon as their neighbour or the worst man out there. The prospect is also a removal of liberty.

    The hand gun ban over here, worked out okay but the UK is also a different animal. Of course the good guys handed theirs in but slowly over time I think they’ve reduced the number in circulation. Shotguns, hunting rifles and airguns are licenced with background checks which are repeated every five years and random checks are also done to check how the weapons are stored.
    Handguns have to remain in clubhouses.

    We are also allowed cap guns and spud guns.

  63. Joy: I have no doubt the satellite channels are doing their usual poor job of news reporting and excellent job of propaganda distribution (I do not believe they don’t know they are in error—they just don’t care and automatic suits their propaganda needs.).
    I am curious what constitutes a “hunting rifle” in England—a single shot rifle, a bolt action, a semi-automatic? After all, the AR-15 is a good hunting rifle. So far as I know, the only way to avoid this problem is a single shot rifle, and even then, these can be reloaded remarkably fast if one wishes. Or outlaw all guns. At that point, I think explosives would take over as the choice of terrorists and other such criminals.

  64. Police were heroic but the police chief did not take leadership to save lives. SWAT should have been sent in at 2:40am. 10 out if 49 shot slowly bled to death at 4AM while swat thought they should wait outside and negotiate..

  65. Sheri,
    Bolt action, yes, a 303, a rifle with a telescopic sight for deer stalking. Stags are the biggest animals we have here.
    There are two million people with shotgun licences here. A riffle requires a separate licence for obvious reasons.

  66. Ron in Austin,
    I’m tempted to say just because you can’t imagine recalling all the machine guns doesn’t mean I can’t or it wouldn’t work but that would be naughty.

    The number quoted today on, I think, CNN, was represented by one gun for every man woman and child. That it guns in general circulation in the US. Not counting in shops I presume.
    So 1 in 3 in the US as opposed to 1 in 30 in the UK.

  67. Joy: Thank you for the answer. I hadn’t thought about the size of game difference. We have moose, elk and bear that are all larger than a stag. It is interesting that people are rarely bothered by shotguns, but shotguns inside a building can be more deadly than the AR—15. The carnage would be unbelievable.

  68. Joy,
    Please stop talking about machine guns. There are relatively few machine guns in civilian ownership in the US and they are very tightly regulated. Only one of those machine guns was ever involved in a crime, and the owner was a police officer!

    The media lies and lies, mostly out of ignorance but too often by intent. Do not trust them when they talk about firearms.

    AR-15’s are *not* machine guns, they are not “assault weapons” and they are not “assault rifles.” They are, indeed, deadly, as are all guns. They look physically like assault rifles – the M-16 and M-4 rifles used by the US military. BUT… AR-15’s, unlike assault rifles, cannot be switched to fire more than one bullet per trigger pull. If you hold down the trigger on an assault rifle, it goes “brrrrrrr” and fires a bunch of bullets – either all in the magazine, or 3 bullets, depending on the model. If you hold down the trigger on an AR-15, it goes bang, and then waits for you to let up on the trigger and pull it again.

    They are also not “high powered rifles.” They are far less powerful than many deer rifles, and also less powerful than normal military rifles of World War II. The military chose to use less powerful bullets because they are smaller, so a soldier can carry more of them. The Soviets started this with the AK-47 (which itself was based on a Nazi assault rifle). The US followed suit with the M-16. The AR-15 shoots the same sized bullet as an M-16.

    Finally, the shooter in Orlando did *not* have an AR-15. He had some other semi-automatic rifle.

  69. John,
    Please read Greg’s comment at 2:11 PM followed up by others regarding what the barbarian used and what it is called.

    Of course the media is treacherous and traitorous. That’s a given.

    Of course machine guns are allowed. Qualifiers aren’t a help. They are banned or not. Take this up with some of your fellow US citizens on here who want the right to own cannons and other artillery. Machine guns have one place only.

    The word ‘machine’ is descriptive with respect to how the gun operates. ‘automatic’ is considered slightly less dirty a word and is used to excuse weapons that can discharge many bullets at a time. I’ve yet had no answer about ‘semi-automatic’, I’m guessing I was right therefore. The gun that was used is considered semi-automatic.
    I’d ban them too.

    For more argument about this please see the previous post about the assault weapons ban. (apparently) having no effect. The statistics clearly show it!!!!
    Why Americans who are all out for guns can’t just say so without hiding behind a moral imperative is obvious. There’s no moral imperative and there’s only the lust for guns left once you take away the imperative right. It’s an argument going nowhere though. Don’t take my ice cream or I scream.
    Most people don’t change their minds, they die.

    That someone can repeatedly pull a trigger without having to reload each time is an important factor in the numbers of people who were killed on Sunday.

  70. I will add to John’s :
    The media may say “automatic”, but Joy and any regular reader here should know by now it’s never the case.

    The gun was finally identified as a Sig Sauer MCX .223-caliber. The news had switched to “AR-15 type” rifle by last night, now seems to have the correct ID. To the propagandists in the news media, a .22 hunting rifle with a plastic folding stock and a plastic fore end would be an assault rifle. It’s based entirely on looks and magazine capacity. As noted, many guns can be reloaded very quickly, so magazine capacity is just a convenience. Also, as I said, a shotgun or a .50 Smith and Wesson would have done more damage inside a building that small. But reality never enters into these discussions, just the fantasy world of the progressives.

  71. Sheri,
    Yes, a shotgun causes a larger area of damage to flesh per cartridge.
    It is the coward’s weapon, that is the sawn off type.
    Impact damage and power of the gun on a case basis can be considered separately: These things are always mixed up.

    A shotgun would not have done what the ‘X’ did on Sunday given the same circumstances. (apparently it’s not an AR15, next time they name it on the news I’ll take note)
    He would undoubtably have been intercepted either manually or by being shot whilst reloading. Yes he could have done some but nothing like the number.

    People also would have had more time to escape. One of the survivors described him as having released a hail while they were all lying in a pile and did so from some distance to make sure they were dead. Exactly like in Paris.

    It is not the belief that banning guns like his one would prevent attacks.

    Murderers find a way. It is the access which is being argued.

    Some use the argument abut knives and hammers but it is rather silly because like for like the man would have got nowhere on Sunday with a knife or a hammer.

    The hospital Dr reported that they have five a night on most days in the one hospital. It’s madness.

    Just heard “semi automatic rifle.” On Fox news right now. No model details.

  72. Ok, Joy. I apologize.

    So, IF A PERSON wants to…

    That better? I don’t care. Any old person. YOU! Your next door neighbor.

    Here, the direct quote: “You don’t like safe, calm, happy, peaceful? Well ok, go for it. Again, just saying.” All I said was, if you like that, as those folks did, then go for it.

    Now you, “You don’t get away with that sort of cheap shot.
    What I like and what I do are none of your business.” Hmmmm. A little bit sensitive there? I did not get into your business. Not then, not now, not ever. Me believes that you are projecting. Again, as I said, if you like that sort of thing, then go for it. That’s a cheap shot? Sheeeeesh.

    There were 320 folks that liked that sort of stuff and now 49 of them are dead. It is my hope that of the 280 of them left alive will think twice about some of their choices in the future.

    Now about this “method of implication” business? “From line four onwards you certainly use the method of implication with regular use of the word ‘you’.” What’s that about. Truly don’t understand. I did not imply anything. You projected. Simple statement. If you want to go do that, then go ahead. No implication. No cheap shot. No nothing. If you want to take a cold shower, then go ahead, do it. If you want a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, then go ahead, make it and eat it. Ok by me.

    And illegal? What’s illegal? Implication?

  73. Joy: Sawed-off shotguns are illegal in the US.
    You’re right, the shotgun would not have done the same damage—it would have done far more. Anyone close to the shot would have made into mincemeat. Anyone else nearby would have been severely wounded, depending on the shot load and the gauge of the shotgun. He would more than likely have more than one shot before reloading. I have only one single shot shotgun.
    The caliber of bullets matter, too, and the bullet velocity. The .223 is a neither high-powered, nor large. It matters, too, where people are hit. One person was hit three times in the leg and lived. The biggest factor in the death toll was the density of people—a whole lot of people in small area. No matter what gun is used, there are people who will likely die. Only spreading out the people will help.
    Had he used a .50 caliber weapon, he could simply have shot through several patrons at once. No one seems to understand that a table or person will stop a bullet like on TV. In a crowded nightclub, a high-power handgun or rifle could have killed just as many.
    “Of course machine guns are allowed. Qualifiers aren’t a help. They are banned or not.” You are arguing that drugs, murder and so forth are “allowed” in your country because they happen. Are you really that stupid????? Or do you just insist on being “right”? You really are stupid when it comes to guns, that’s very, very apparent. And apparently you’re extremely proud of that stupidity and flaunt it as often as possible.
    DEER rifles in your country can fire MORE THAN one shot without reloading. You would ban everything, including shotguns, that are not single shot. You want to go back to black powder days and musket loaders—or maybe swords and armor. Who could tell with your complete disconnect from reality?

  74. JH asked about statistics on “gun violence” which I assume means murder statistics. I have no idea how inanimate objects like guns commit violence.
    Here is a link to the Gary Mauser article.
    http://garymauser.net/pdf/KatesMauserHJPP.pdf

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

*

© 2016 William M. Briggs

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑